Garden Planning

Garden Chores

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Moving Right Along

Well, I have been a busy gardener. Last week, I repotted my houseplants. Just like people, houseplants need an annual renewal. The soil needs to be emptied of the old soil and the pot needs to be sanitized. I do this by washing the pots in a mixture of one part bleach per nine parts water. I trim any roots that may have been pot bound and then place them back in new soil with a time released fertilizer. After a good watering, they are ready to be returned to their resting places within my home. It's a great thing having my "children" fed and happy.

This week, I checked those seeds that I began testing last week. I am very happy with the results. Everything sprouted except the heirloom tomatoes, chives and peppers. Since they have longer germination time, I am going to check them next week before discarding them for new seeds.

So, as you can see...things are moving right along.

Thursday, January 10, 2008

Inventory Seeds and Then Test

Now that the hype of the holidays is behind us, I am getting really excited about gardening again. I know it is just January however, there are things that need to be accomplished in preparation for the sowing season.

First, I did an inventory of what I was going to plant this year. We are doing much of what we did last year with some additions. We are going to plant peppers again for pickling and making my red pepper pesto which was delicious! We are also doing parsley and basil again for the regular pesto. My lettuces were a huge success so, I am definitely including them this year again. And finally, the cucumbers, onions and carrots will also be present and this year, I am going to try some different salsas and relishes with these.

The new stuff is what really has me jazzed. I am trying corn this year as well as peas and beans. Also for a new twist, I am trying pumpkins from seeds that I saved this fall. And for tomatoes this year, I am going to try some family heirloom tomatoes. I am very excited about this endeavor. It will be my first attempt at saving seeds and sowing them into new plants the next year.

So, my seed chart is complete and I know when I will be starting each seedling. However, I needed to make sure that I have healthy seeds to sow. So, I started testing my seeds yesterday. All you do is put 10 seeds in a damp paper towel and place that into a zip lock bag that has been labeled with the type of seed and the date. Then, wait for the appropriate sprouting time. If 60% or more of the seeds sprout, then you can use that batch of seeds for sowing. If not, you must discard them and buy new seeds. So, in a week or two we shall see the results of my testing. Wish me luck.

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